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Ryoma! The Prince of Tennis 3DCG Film Screens in U.S. Theaters on May 12

posted on by Alex Mateo
Film will be 1st event in AX Anime Expo Cinema Nights series

Iconic Events Releasing and Anime Expo announced on Thursday that they are partnering to screen the Ryoma! The Prince of Tennis < Decide > (Ryōma! Shinsei Gekijōban Tennis no Ōji-sama) 3DCG anime film in U.S. theaters on May 12. The film will be the inaugural event in the AX Anime Expo Cinema Nights in-person movie event series. The companies will announce ticket sales and theaters at a later time.

Eleven Arts is distributing the film in North America.

The film opened in Japan on September 3. The film has earned about 419,197,830 yen (about $3.64 million).

The film played in theaters in two versions, in which some scenes are different to move the story on two parallel tracks. The "Decide" version focuses on the Seigaku team captain Kunimitsu Tezuka and Rikkai team captain Seiichi Yukimura, while the "Glory" version focuses on the Hyōtei team captain Keigo Atobe and Shitenhōji team captain Kuranosuke Shiraishi.

The film's story begins with the main lead Ryōma arriving in the United States, and finding Sakuno Ryūzaki being accosted by a "tennis gang." Ryōma swings a ball at them to help Sakuno, but ends up hitting a ball tossed by a mysterious wheelchaired man. At that moment, Ryōma and Sakuno somehow travel back in time to the time when Ryōma's father Nanjiro was still playing in America as "Samurai Nanjiro."

Original manga creator Takeshi Konomi supervised the film. The anime was previously slated to open in spring 2020, but was delayed to 2021. The film features a completely original story that takes place in the three-month time period between the events at the end of the The Prince of Tennis manga and the start of The New Prince of Tennis manga.

Hiroshi Koujina (2011 Hunter × Hunter, Kiba) directed the anime at The Monk Studios and Keica with cooperation by Studio KAI. GAGA is distributing the film. Takehiko Hata (Lupin III: Goodbye Partner) wrote the script, Patricia Hishikawa was the CG supervisor, Kei Yoshimizu was the animation director, and Momoko Yamada was the CG director. Takeshi Takadera was the sound director, and Kei Tsuda composed the music. Original manga creator Takeshi Konomi himself wrote all the insert songs for the film, including the lyrics for the rap songs.

Konomi serialized The Prince of Tennis manga's original run in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump magazine from 1999 to 2008. The manga follows middle school tennis player Ryōma Echizen as he battles rivals to reach the national tournament. That original manga inspired a 2001-2005 television anime, two anime feature films and a theatrical short, various video anime projects, a live-action film, a live-action television series in China, and a popular stage musical series.

The Shin Tennis no Ōji-sama U-17 World Cup (The Prince of Tennis II: U-17 World Cup) anime series will premiere this year and will be the first television series in the franchise in about a decade.

Source: Press release

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